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Department of Taxation and Finance

Assessor's Manual, Exemption Administration: RPTL Section 459-a

Exemption Administration Manual—Part 2: Industrial, Commercial, and Public Service

Section 4.06 - RPTL Section 459-a: Improvements to Property pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990

Exemption code:4780_

Year originally enacted: 1995

Related statutes: None

Summary:

To the extent allowed by local option, real property altered, installed or improved to remove architectural barriers in existing property for persons with disabilities subsequent to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Public Law § §101-336; 42 United States Code, §12101 et seq.) is exempt from taxation to the extent of any increase in value attributable to these improvements. These improvements are exempt for up to ten years from special ad valorem levies as well as from general municipal and school taxes, but are liable for special assessments.

Eligibility requirements

Ownership requirements:

None.

Property location requirements:

None.

Property use requirements:

None.

Certification by state or local government:

None required.

Required construction start date or other time requirement:

None. Furthermore, exemptions may be granted to alterations, installments, or improvements constructed subsequent to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and prior to the effective date of the local option allowing the exemption.

Local option

Yes—Each county, city, town, village or school district may choose whether or not to allow the exemption. The option must be exercised by a county, city, town or village through adopting a local law and by a school district through adoption of a resolution. In all cases, a public hearing must be held prior to adoption of the local law or resolution. Each county, city, town, village or school district may choose to (1) reduce the percent of the exemption otherwise allowed by this statute and (2) limit eligibility for the exemption to those forms of alterations, installations, or improvements that are prescribed in such local law or resolution.

Limitation on exemption

Limitation on exemption by amount, duration, and taxing jurisdiction
Type of limitation General municipal taxes School district taxes Special ad valorem levies Special assessments
Amount Yes* Yes* Yes* No exemption allowed
Duration 10 years** 10 years** 10 years** No exemption allowed
Taxing jurisdiction: county or county special district Exempt*** Not applicable Exempt*** Taxable
Taxing jurisdiction: city Exempt*** Not applicable Not applicable Taxable
Taxing jurisdiction: town or town special district Exempt*** Not applicable Exempt*** Taxable
Taxing jurisdiction: village Exempt*** Not applicable Not applicable Taxable
Taxing jurisdiction: school district Not applicable Exempt*** Not applicable Not applicable

*Amount is limited to alterations, installations, or improvements commenced after the local option becomes effective. If these alterations or improvements were commenced prior to the effective date of the local option but constructed subsequent to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, these improvements also are exempt from taxation. Local option may reduce the annual exemption allowed by state law.

**Less than ten years if the exemption was granted on alterations, installations and improvements predating the local option and subsequent to the Americans with Disabilities Act.

***If allowed by local option.

Payments in lieu of taxes

None required.

Calculation of exemption

General municipal and school district taxes:

Unless reduced by local law or resolution, the following percentages of the increase in assessed value resulting from construction of the alteration, installation or improvement should be applied:

Percentage of exemption based on year of exemption
Year of exemption Percentage of exemption
1 50
2 45
3 40
4 35
5 30
6 25
7 20
8 15
9 10
10 5

If the alteration, installation, or improvement was commenced prior to the local option but subsequent to the Americans with Disability Act, the exemption should be calculated based on the number of years which would otherwise remain if the exemption had been adopted by local option before commencement of the improvement.

Example: The exemption is adopted by local option in time for the 1996 assessment roll, and an improvement subsequent to the ADA was commenced prior to the 1993 assessment roll. If the application is approved and the exemption granted, such an improvement would qualify for a 35 percent exemption on the 1996 roll (i.e., in the fourth year of the exemption).

Special ad valorem Levies and special sssessments:

For ad valorem levies, the schedule listed above should be applied.

No exemption allowed for special assessments.

Coding of exemption on assessment roll

Code: 4780_

Assessment roll section

Taxable (RPS Section 1)

Note: This code should not be used to identify property that is exempt under any of the statutes listed under Similar Exemptions below. For coding of such property, see the Exemption Profile for the statute that applies.

Filing requirements (owner or occupant of property)

Form RP-459-a, Application for Partial Exemption for Real Property Altered, Installed, or Improved to Remove Architectural Barriers in Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990

Reporting requirements (assessor)

None.

Similar exemptions

Statute based on disability
Subject Statute
Certain living quarters constructed to be occupied by a senior citizen or disabled individual RPTL §467-d
Disabled crime victims RPTL §459-b
Persons with disabilities and limited incomes RPTL §459-c
Physically disabled RPTL §459

Exemption Application Form:

Available at Property Tax exemption form web page.

Please send general questions or comments to Orpts Solutions Center

Updated: